If your intention is to keep your skin healthy and glowing for years to come, you cannot overlook the role of inflammation and its impact on the skin.

What is inflammation?

Inflammation is a normal function of the immune system. It is your body’s first line of defence against toxins, infections and injuries. Every time your body recognises an injury or something harmful thing entering the body, its role is to help fight infection and repair it.

When is inflammation a problem?

Ongoing inflammation that persists day in and day out, even when you are not threatened by injury or infection, is a problem for the body. It has been linked to many diseases including heart disease, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic pain, aching muscles, painful joints and fatigue.

How Does Inflammation Impact the Skin?

If the skin is in a constant state of inflammation, it will eventually lead to a breakdown in collagen, which causes loss of skin tone, plus fine lines and wrinkles. It can also lead to other skin conditions such as rosace.

Is There Anything I Can Do To Reduce My Risk of Inflammation?

Many lifestyle factors can lead to chronic inflammation (the kind that leads to disease) these include smoking, obesity, chronic stress, drinking too much alcohol, fried food and refined foods and sugars. By making lifestyle changes, we can help reduce our risk of chronic inflammation.

The ingredients found in a beauty food diet have a natural anti-inflammatory effect on the body and skin. That is because they are high in fibre and antioxidants, which medical research has shown can help lower inflammation.

Fiery Blueberry Smoothie

In my latest smoothie recipe, I have included antioxidant rich celery, ginger, banana and blueberries.

These ingredients contain high levels of anti-inflammatory compounds including Gingerol and Kaempferol. (Plus, taste wise they work great together).

Kaempferol is found in the above ingredients. It is an antioxidant extensively studied for reducing inflammation.

(Kaemperol is one of the key compounds in our Saffron Glow Cleansing Clay Mask, which is gentle, soothing and cleansing!)

Ginger contains Gingerols is and according to the BBC website

'The root, the part of the plant most widely used in alternative forms of medicine, is rich in volatile oils that contain the active component gingerol. This potent anti-inflammatory compound is believed to explain why people with osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis experience reductions in their pain levels and improvements in their mobility when they consume ginger regularly. Gingerols inhibit the formation of inflammatory cytokines, or chemical messengers of the immune system.'

You may have noted that I did not state the amount of fresh ginger root I used in my smoothie. I prefer to make mine very strong, especially when I have a sore throat and congestion, as it is wonderfully soothing and helps clear the throat and chest. 25g of fresh ginger gives it a nice little kick, but if you can handle it, I recommend you double the amount!

I used Alpro Vanilla Soya milk, which gave a lovely creamy taste to the smoothie. This recipe contains lots of calcium too!

Nutritional content: 45.5 % calcium 9% Vitamin A, 7.5% Vitamin C, 3.2% Fibre 8.6g protein, 4.7g fat, 23.6g Carbs, 189 calories

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